I Recognize The Insanity…I Do.

There’s this thing that I do. I’m sure you do it too.

(Please tell me it’s not just me).

I go on and on about how I have SO many books that I’m running out of space. I’ve got review copies. Older books I’ve never ever read. New books I’ve acquired. ALL BOOKS I AM EXCITED ABOUT. Basically, I’ve got A LOT of books. More books than I can read in this life time. (And it’s not like I’m going to ever stop acquiring them).

So what do I do?

WHAT PERFECTLY NORMAL BOOKWORMS DO. (right right right?) I immediately get into my car and GO TO THE LIBRARY instead of picking up one of the books here.

Will doesn’t get it when I come home with library books. He’s all, “BUT YOU HAVE SO MANY BOOKS HERE TO READ. WHY DO YOU NEED TO GO GET SOME MORE?”

And I’m all:

+ I couldn’t find anything I was in the mood for on my shelves. (Him: OUT OF ALL THESE BOOKS…NOT ONE??)
+ There is no such thing as too many books. (Him: Yes. There is. You are Exhibit A).
+ I RECOGNIZE THE INSANITY, OKAY, AND I AM FINE WITH IT. (Him: As long as you recognize it).

I do this with my closet too. I am out of hangers and really have no room for more clothes but I can stand there in my closet for 20 minutes and lament the lack of clothing options. Apparently it’s the same with the bookshelves. I can have a bajillion options (too many it feels like sometimes) but sometimes I still just like coming home with a stack of library books.

As I’m writing this, I just in fact came back from the library (I got Daughter of Smoke & Bone and Finnikin of the Rock in case you were curious). When I arrived home, there were TWO packages of books at my door. On my way to my bookshelves I tripped over a book. I stand in front of my bookshelves and immediately feel the guilt and the judging stares coming from them (and my piles…let’s be real..it’s Hoarders up in here).

It doesn’t really make sense why I went to the library and got more books….but I accept that it doesn’t make sense.

Let’s Talk

AM I THE ONLY ONE?? Can anyone make sense of my need to do this even though I have hundreds and hundreds of perfectly good books I’m excited about here??

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.



    and also you are not the only one. I’ve got stacks of books, review copies, etc. and I have a stack of library books to read too, and I always feel obligated to read those first because due dates.

    • EEEE I AM SO EXCITED. I love her contemps so much!! And *bows* it’s KIIIIND OF THE WHOLE BLOGOSPHERE’S FAULT FOR GETTING ME INTO FANTASY. Had I never blogged I probably would have never read any fantasy…or minimal.

      Glad I’m not the only one!! <3

  2. Will and my mom totally think the same. She’s just so confused when I come home with a tote full of books when I just got a crap ton in the mail and my Kindle is going to implode at any second. But…I can’t help it! The library supplements my collection…it’s like an extension of my books….so yeah, I must go there…

  3. You are not alone. I have at least 100 unread books on my shelf, but I also have 25 library books out right now and am reading mostly from those. Just tell him to be happy that these are free and they will go back.

    Also, I’m glad to see you picking up Daughter of Smoke & Bone – it is one of my favorites.

    • HA exactly — at least I’m not BUYING all these books that I’m getting from the library! And yeaaaah I’m so excited for DoSaB. I got an ARC of it many many years ago at BEA and I never read it πŸ™ I FEEL LIKE I AM THe WORST.

  4. Nope. Definitely not the only one

  5. I GET YOUUU! I have so many unread books on my shelves. I have countless ebooks. (Like when I go to buy a book and amazon helpfully goes: you purchased this on… and i’m all oh. it got lost in my kindle) I try to stay AWAY from the library because then I never get to them in time and have to keep renewing and then pay fines. πŸ™ Because when I go I can’t control myself, I see so many things i want to read and I check them out! Example: last week my husband and I went to the library bc he was looking for a book. I went just to look. him: do you have something you’re looking for? me: no not really. him: ok, let me go check if they have this i’ll be right back. He comes back and finds me and I have a stack of 5 books in my hands and he’s all, I thought you didn’t want any? and I’m like, oh but i’ve been wanting to read these! Haha. so yeah, i totally understand you!!

    • HAHHAHA re: Amazon reminding you that you bought something. And omg that’s my problem…I pay soooo much in fines but I cannot resist. And your story. THAT IS SO ME. I go in just to return my books and then I come out with a new stack when I had NOOO intentions of even looking.

  6. I guess I’m one of the “out-of-norm” here as a bookworm. Why is that so? I have less than 10 printed TBR books that I own (both review copies and purchased) and I have about 30 unread eBooks (both review copies and purchased too) on my iPad so I think I am quite under control at the moment.

    Again, why is that so? Because…I’m a bookseller! Apart from those I reserved for my own reading, I’m always surrounded by over 150 copies of inventory packed in boxes (I’m an online bookseller).

    But apart from that reason, I tend to control myself in getting new books as I’m afraid to be overwhelmed by them and have difficulties in deciding which one to read next.

    • Haha, at least from the comments you seem to be in the minority, but that’s okay!!! PLEASE TEACH ME YOUR WAYS! And you are smart thought…bc I just wrote a whole post a couple weeks ago about how overwhelmed I am with all my choices hahah

      • Haha! Honestly, I never expect I have ways to teach about that. But now you mentioned it, you did inspire me to write something about that.

        But at this moment I can think of these:
        1) Make a list of the books you have now in a spreadsheet. This will force us to face the reality that we have SO MUCH books yet to read. Then pick the book to read (randomly or by sequence). Set a target to buy new books only after the quantity of books in the list falls down to X number.
        2) Whenever we pay a visit to a book store / library (if we really have to buy books), make a purchase list and buy nothing out of the list. I learnt this from grocery shopping. πŸ™‚

  7. I do this exact same thing! I tak about all the books I own that I need to read, but this month I mostly read library books… I think I need to cut myself off from the library.

  8. I don’t run to the library, but into the bookstore. I have piles with unread books EVERYWHERE and still I can’t stop myself from buying more. It makes me far too happy, haha. The feeling when I come home with a new book or two – the feeling when I’m waiting for a package to arrive; I love it. I am addicted.

    • YES it really is happymaking. Like when I’m having a bad day I just go to the library and it FEELS like retail therapy even if I can’t actually keep them. It gives the illusion to me for a little bit and gets out my need for retail therapy! NEW BOOKS ARE JUST SUCH GOOD MOOD BOOSTERS.

  9. Nikki Robinson says:

    My mom would agree with him. I am constantly buying books. My shelves are packed full, but I just buy more. I just feel better with the books. Buying books is my retail therapy. I always say to my mom, “would you rather me spend the money on drugs?” And that changes the subject.

    • HAHAH EXACTLY. But same…it’s my retail therapy too! Even if I’m just going to the library. I walk out FEELING like I just bought them even though I didn’t haha

  10. We all get it and do it and know people who do it. It’s the non readers that don’t understand, the Judgy McJudgerson’s! Do your thing!

    • Best part of this community…you don’t feel alone in these behaviors others think are “odd”! I mean, my husband is just joking with me…he accepts my habits..but sometimes it is nice to have people actually GET it.

  11. I am with ya, my husband hates it. I have so many books that I started a TBR jar for the ones I own and haven’t read yet, so I have him pull one out every month and I have to read that one. It has helped a little bit with him going crazy about too many books in the house. BUT this is my hobby, he has cars and things like that. We try to be understanding of each others ‘things’ but I have a lot of books… too many :/

    • I need to do a TBR jar full of books I’ve had on my shelves for more than a year (which is a massive list). And yeah, Will ACCEPTS but he doesn’t always get it lol

  12. I think I get to win the insanity round! I WORK in a library and am SURROUNDED by books all day. I have a MAXED out library card and STILL I see books in the library and go OOOOOH, and end up either putting them on my sister’s card (she’s at university and doesn’t read and the notifications go to my e-mail account…) or I just… “override” the system message that says I ALREADY HAVE TOO MANY BOOKS.

    But…. I wanted to read THIS one.

    Which of course…

    I won’t read for MONTHS… if ever.

    Yes, I think I beat you. πŸ˜›

  13. You are not alone. Nope.
    I sometimes feel like a badger in her den when I’m surrounded with books – and it’s the possibility of CHOICE that I love so much. I think that if I only had one unread book in the house (and it could have been THE BEST BOOK in the whole world), I’d have a panic attack. I’d probably end up re-reading an old favourite. I don’t know what the deal is with this feeling but there it is.

  14. I FEEL YOU! I do the exact same thing! I have so many books at home just waiting to be read (and I just bought some new ones… oops) and so many free ebooks and e-arcs on my tablet, but still I run to the library as soon as I can and stack up on other, different books. I’m not really sure why I do it… Most of the time, I’m just in the mood to read that one, specific book that the library has, so I HAVE to go get it and read it immediately. I’ll have time to read the ones I own whenever I want, but that library book may not be available anymore. That makes some sense, right? (Please, tell me it does and I’m not totally crazy!) Guess it’s a bookworm problem… πŸ˜‰

  15. Daughter of Smoke and Bone!! So good! I read it last year (and forgot to review it, so I have it going up in March) and I fell in love with Karou! She’s awesome.

    Anyways, no you’re not alone. I don’t usually go to the library because I can NEVER return the books on time. It doesn’t matter if I borrowed 1 book or 10 books. I’m always having to pay fines because I forget to bring them back. So, I usually go to the bookstore but then my wallet is mad at me. And my fiancee will look at me and be like “Really? More books? Don’t you have enough books?”

    So, no Jamie, you are not alone!

  16. My library has a checkout limit of 50 books… I currently have 20 checked out, among my other books I OWN that I haven’t read yet. You are not alone.

  17. I do this so often (with movies and clothes as well). Sometimes you just truly don’t have the right book, movie, or article of clothing to fit the mood, though! I think I’m passing my problems along to my toddlers as well. They’ll dump out all of their books looking for the right read, and sometimes they’ll find it, and sometimes… I just buy them new ones. :p

  18. Look at how many of us are in the “we have too many books, but keep acquiring more”club! My downfall is not the library (I’m kind of obsessive about reading pristine new books, but that’s a different issue….lol). I keep sneaking off to Book Outlet, where I always find books I wanted to read when they were released, and now they are so cheap, I just have to get them πŸ™‚


  20. Oh my god! I do the same thing Jamie. YOUR BOOK DECISIONS ARE WONDERFUL DON’T LET ANYONE DOUBT IT. Oh Finnikin and Daughter are two of my absolute favorite YA books. They’re beautifully written. I’ve been meaning to reread both of them for a while now.

  21. Yes, I do this, too! But not recently though because I’ve been reading so much fantasy and it’s really been a choice of one fantasy book over another.

    Although, I find it infuriating when I just cannot being myself to pick a book to read from the ones I already own. It also has more to do with me being a mood reader. That’s what I tell myself haha. I do think it’s true because I think there’s a right time for every book to be read.

    P.S. Yes to Finnikin of the Rock and Daughter of Smoke and Bone!

  22. I’m the same too. My Kindle is overflowing with ebooks but I still browse and browse and browse and in the end up buying something new….

  23. Kimberly C. says:

    I also do this! Like you, I’m a mood reader. I may buy/receive/check out/download a book I’ve been waiting to read for ages, then not read it for months because I’m just not in the mood. It’s a serious problem.

    But as a librarian, I fully support your use of the library despite owning books you could read instead. Your librarians thank you for your continue patronage! πŸ™‚

  24. ahahahahahaha
    You are definitely not the only one. Definitely not. The only reason I don’t get a lot of judgy comments from my own husband is because I hide them all on my kindle. Seriously, like every extra penny of my fun money goes to ebooks I don’t read and then I go to the library like twice a week (for the kids *wink, wink*) and come home with EVEN MORE BOOKS.
    My name is Kate and I’m a bookaholic.

  25. I say he has no right to complain as long as you’re not buying a crapton of new books (like I do…)! I know you had struggled with book-buying-itis in the past, so I feel like getting them from the library instead is a HUGE step forward πŸ˜‰

  26. YEP YEP I totally agree. I am especially the worst with clothing! I buy and buy and buy and run out of hangers and complain and never have anything to wear and BUY MORE STILL. I love the library too. I can’t resist it.

  27. Oh my gosh, this is me ALL the time. Like I’m currently reading one of my own books and I have an Arc my Secret Sister sent me to read, but I still went to the library (partially because I work with kids and needed books for group time). I had to get a new card since I just moved here and was all “hmmm I wonder what they have…” I left with 4 books. 4 rather large books. And, to be honest, they have been sitting on the table that I have designated as the “library table” ever since. It’s a problem that I accept (and I thankfully live super close to the library and drive by it daily) but still. My husband doesn’t even question it anymore.

  28. Nope, I do this too! I used to go the library ALL. THE. TIME. (and then I moved to Dubai aka the city that hates books). I would pick up my reserved books, and a literal stack full of other books that I saw with pretty covers, even though I knew I didn’t have the ability to read more than 2 per week at the VERY MOST. I just liked having them around. I even had a special bookshelf in my house devoted to only library books. There are worse habits! At least books look pretty sitting all over the house πŸ˜‰

  29. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I stare at my bookcases dedicated to “Haven’t Read Yet” and sigh dramatically and think, “there is nothing to read!” And then I go and find more books at the store or library. It’s a problem. At least we recognize it. Doesn’t mean we have to fix it πŸ˜‰

  30. I do understand! I love going to the library though. There’s something about perusing all of the books, choosing several that look good, knowing I don’t have to pay anything when I leave, and knowing it’s no big deal if I don’t read all of them (I always bring home more than I could possibly read). With the cold though, I am trying to get through more books at home simply because I hate going out into the cold weather any more than I need to. Embrace this – I think the library is fabulous!

  31. I just did the same thing! Im overwhelmed with books… and I went to the library. Oops. <3 Bee @ Bee Reads Books

  32. Hate to say it, but I’m with Will! You have so many to choose from! How could there not be one in the pile that would take you to the happy place?!

    But then again, I also get the whole library/bookstore happy place thing. So many books, and you can just pick what you want and leave and know all those other books are still there if you need to go back. That’s comforting. I like to keep a really small TBR pile and it’s almost entirely digital these days. If you need a HOARDERS INTERVENTION, I am your girl.

  33. This is the story of my life! I get overwhelmed by my unread shelf of books…so what do i do? I do to the library or bookstore and get more.

  34. You’re definitely not alone! I feel this need to constantly acquire more books! I too have SOOO many books filling up my bookshelves and my floor and room that it would seem that I wouldn’t need any more for a while. NOPE. I go to the library a lot. I even go to the library to get more books when I must finish another book for book club first. I feel like this is a problem for book lovers everywhere.

  35. This is so me…I buy books and request books and win books and yet when I see a new one at my school library that was on my TBR ages back or just plain looks good, I’ll go for it. I justify this by saying A) I graduate in a few months and I won’t have this convenient library forever and B) I’m a fast reader and I can read most books in 1-2 days so I can afford to read this now. But then it just keeps going and going and going and doesn’t stop….! But I do make sure to read SOME originally planned books so I’m getting SOMEWHERE.

  36. I definitely agree with you! I experience these kind of things too. I think, it’d be good if you can donate the books which you think you won’t reread to other people or institutions. Maybe, your husband will understand you that way. πŸ™‚

  37. Hahaha! You’re totally normal in my book.

  38. Yup! I do this all the time, too. Mainly, though, because I just like going to the library and browsing around. Plus I find that there are times that going to the library reminds me of all the amazing books they have — and that I don’t need to buy so many. I was quite impressed with the pile of books I’ve bought this year, until I realized that it was still February and then I thought, I’ve bought THAT many books already?!? The only problem is that sometimes books are on request, or you get them from another library and you can’t renew them, so you really have to adhere to the time frame you have them for. I usually forget this and go nuts and bring home 20 books and read maybe one. I’m learning.

  39. You are not alone Jamie! I work at a library and am always bringing home more books to read even though I have plenty that I own sitting on my shelves waiting to be read. Luckily, my husband doesn’t care either, just thinks it is a little weird sometimes. haha At least the books from the library are free! πŸ˜€

  40. YOU ARE SO NOT ALONE IN THIS ONE, JAMIE. I guess, no scratch that, I believe every bookworm has this ever perpetually growing (pun not intended) TBR pile that sometimes we get too thrown off by the sheer amount of choices that we tend to escape it and end up picking ones we think we’ll read this time. And the cycle repeats. So then it goes on and on.

  41. I have so many books on my shelves that I stared at one of them today and thought, “I’m running out of space. Already.” My husband bought me two extra shelves specifically for this purpose and yet the shelf space just keeps on diminishing.

  42. I do the same thing with books. I buy more, borrow from library, etc. I’m such a mood reader. LOL

  43. I’m in the same boat – we are proud bibliophiles πŸ™‚

  44. Oh you are NOT alone. I think every book addict does this. I have tons of print copies and over a hundred books on my Kindle. Yet, I keep buying new books ALL THE TIME. I am going to try to refrain from buying new books until I can read SOME of the ones on my Kindle and catch up on some of my ARC’s. The key word there is “try.” Haha

  45. Oh I recognize this insanity I do! Haha πŸ™‚ I don’t have so many books sent to me for review but I still have a list and a half. Increasingly though, the library is less of a happy place (though i still feel warm & fuzzy when I get there). They are too slow to get new stuff and the real gems are out – but I still get a few treasures there and it is a joy to watch my 6 year old load up. Happy reading x

  46. I DO THIS TOO. My roommates are actually sort of afraid to come into my room because I have PILES OF BOOKS EVERYWHERE because I have no more bookshelf space and nowhere to put an additional bookcase, anyway. And then there’s my stack of library books. And I own a Kindle so I’ve got all those ebooks to read, too. (I do this with clothes, too. I own, like, twenty pairs of jeans. And my tea cupboard? Maybe possibly a little excessive.)

  47. Oh, I totally relate to this! I do it all the time. Using the library to get “new” books makes me feel better about not really being able to spend on actual new books, which is one of the reasons I’m so addicted (and often have overdue books). But seriously, sometimes, it’s just the mood you’re in, you know? You just need that new title! That being said, with the Picky Pledge I’m doing with Hannah, I’m trying to figure out how to hold myself more accountable when it comes to acquiring books — and succeeding a little πŸ™‚

  48. I DO THIS ALL THE TIME! *cries* And so, while most book bloggers and book tubers speak of book buying ban, I’ve put myself on a library books “diet” and am considering a “library ban” after my last few library books are due. The first step has been to surrender my dad’s library card to him and I’ve forbidden myself from using my sister’s library card for the time-being as well. There are so many wonderful books on my shelf at home that I couldn’t wait for to read when I bought them and yet they still are left unread on my bookshelf. I’ve finally come to my senses and decided that this is an unacceptable state to be in. Heh.


  1. […] post is inspired by Jamie when I read her post regarding recognizing her insanity of having so many […]